Yesterday, we told you that the 2012 Volkswagen Passat received a Top Safety Pick award from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. Now comes word that the Passat's upscale cousin, the 2012 Audi A6, has earned the same accolade.
Like the Passat, the Audi A6 scored a rating of "good' in four key tests: front, side, rollover, and rear crash protection. The A6's final test was the rollover/roof strength test, in which the luxury car demonstrated its ability to withstand a force equivalent to 4.9 times the vehicle's total weight.
In the rollover test, the IIHS considers any car roof that can withstand four times a vehicle's own weight to be "good". (The roof of the Passat, by comparison, withstood 6.3 times the car's weight -- though at roughly 3500 pounds, the Passat is slightly lighter than the 3900-pound A6.) In case you weren't aware, a roof only has to be able to support 1.5 times a vehicle's weight to meet federal standards.
To earn a Top Safety Pick award from the IIHS, vehicles like the 2012 Audi A6 must also have electronic stability control (ESC) as part of their standard package. Jumping that hurdle should be easy for every car, now that the feds have mandated that all passenger vehicles manufactured after September 1, 2011 must come with ESC.